Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation program is looking for volunteers to participate in World Wetlands Day, helping with removal of invasive species and to restore habitat in the Gallup Park wet prairie Saturday, Feb. 2, 1–3 p.m. (3000 Fuller Road). Hundreds of educational events and workdays are planned around the world for this international celebration of wetlands.
Gallup Park’s unique wetland lies alongside the Border-to-Border Trail and is home to several rare plant species. NAP will lead efforts to keep this ecosystem healthy by removing invasive shrubs such as buckthorn.
From Gallup’s main entrance, participants should drive across the wooden bridge, and meet in the first lot after the bridge. Volunteers should dress in layers and wear shoes suitable for snow or wet ground. All participants must complete a release form, and all minors should be accompanied by a guardian. Tools, snacks and know-how provided.
World Wetlands Day is celebrated every year on Feb. 2 to raise global awareness about the value of wetlands for humanity and the planet. The international event is organized by The Ramsar Convention Secretariat and supported by the Danone Fund for water. This year’s theme, “wetlands and climate change,” draws attention to the vital role of wetlands as a natural solution to cope with climate change. Wetlands absorb and store carbon and also play an important role in reducing floods and protecting coastlines.
City of Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation (NAP) works to protect and restore Ann Arbor’s natural areas and to foster an environmental ethic among its citizens. This involves conducting plant and animal inventories, ecological monitoring, and stewardship projects in Ann Arbor parks. Both staff and volunteers perform these tasks. For more information about NAP, visit www.a2gov.org/NAP.
The Ramsar Convention, the world’s oldest environmental convention signed on Feb. 2, 1971, in Ramsar, Iran, brings together 168 countries with a shared mission to ensure the wise use of wetlands, and has a proven track record in working with individual countries, private sector companies, and non-governmental organizations to protect and restore wetlands for global water security. Since 1997, the Ramsar Secretariat has provided materials to help raise awareness about the importance and value of wetlands. For more information, visit www.worldwetlandsday.org.